Originally Posted by nolo
It would be interesting to delve into this topic without the sexism. If women prefer to be with their own gender in learning situations, why? Is it all learning, or just sports? Is it all sports or just skiing?
I do think (in)equality is the heart of the matter. Learning makes you vulnerable. Women are not comfortable showing their vulnerability to men, whereas there's almost a sense of one-upping when it comes to showing their vulnerability to other women. I'm sure an anthropologist could shed some light on the social dynamics of women's only ski groups. All I know is, there's something very empowering about being in a women's group, and ski pros should accept it as the gift it is: there's no demographic group more likely to take a group lesson than women, if you make it women-only.
I actually find the complete opposite to be true. I find in mixed groups that women tend to be more comfortable with learning, with asking questions than men are. And in fact, this can sometimes cause men to get a little impatient...which then leads to women cutting back on questions. And then a women's only clinic becomes very enticing. In fact I would argue the guys get impatient because they don't want to seem vulnerable for not knowing.
I think this occurs more with intermediate level skiers. In fact I think that what happens at this level stems from the men thinking they are better than they are, so they just want to push forward, while the women think they are worse than they are so they want to get better.
At the higher levels, I think the women have more confidence in their ability and the men have more realistic view of theirs, and so mixed may actually work better.
Yes, I realize this is a gross generalization! But I've seen it in other sports and in work situations as well.
But then there's the social part. Personally I enjoy mixed company - always have. But I definitely understand those who prefer hanging with groups of other women.